Plants of the Outer Hebrides


Plants and Habitats in Outer Hebrides

The Flora of the Outer Hebrides by R.J. Pankhurst and J. M. Mullin (1991) comprehensively covers all the plants recorded in the islands including both naturalised and introduced species as well as the native flora. The guide lists just over 790 species of plants that have been found up until 1991 including 16 species of Bramble, 6 species of rose, 13 species of Eyebright, 36 species of Hawkweed, 25 species closely related to the Dandelion and 15 species of Pondweed. The guide gives the 10 km square that each species has been recorded in and a more precise location for some of the rarer plants.

Many of the micro species recorded in the book are for the very keen botanist and undoubtedly very interesting although largely beyond the scope of these pages currently. We do endeavour to photograph all species listed in Pankhurst but expect this will be an ongoing project that will take quite some time to complete.
Rather then go through groups of plants I will list some of typical species you can find in each habitat. In the future these will be connected to photo galleries to aid identification.

The Machair:

Moonwort, Adder's-tongue, Creeping buttercup, Meadow Buttercup, Bulbous Buttercup, Lesser Meadow-rue, Long-headed poppy, Tall Ramping Fumitory, Rape, Wild Turnip, Charlock, Wild Radish, Shepherd's Purse, Hairy Bitter-cress, Hairy Rock-cress, Common Dog-violet, Wild Pansy, Field Pansy, White Campion, Sea Campion, Common Mouse-ear, Sticky Moue -ear, Sea Mouse-ear, Procumbent Pearlwort, Knotted Pearlwort, Corn Spurrey, Fairy Flax, Cut-leaved Crane's-bill, Round-leaved Crane's-bill, Dove's-foot Crane's-bill, Common Storks-bill, Tufted Vetch, White Clover, Red Clover, Lesser Trefoil, Kidney Vetch, Common Bird's-foot trefoil, Greater Bird's-foot Trefoil, Silver weed, Rue-leaved Saxifrage, Hogweed, Wild Carrot, Sun Spurge, Redshank, Black Bindweed, Common Sorrel, Small Nettle, Common Nettle, Creeping Willow, Scarlet Pimpernel, Common Centaury, Field Gentian, Northern Autumn Gentian, Bugloss, Common Forget-me-not, Changing Forget-me-not, Bugloss, Field Bindweed, Wall Speedwell, Yellow Rattle, Eyebrights, Selfheal, Henbit Dead-nettle, Cut-leaved Dead-nettle, Red Dead-nettle, Common Hemp-nettle, Sea Plantain, Buck's-horn Plantain, Harebell (Scottish Bluebell), Field Madder, Lady's Bedstraw, Cleavers, Common Cornsalad, Butterbur, Daisy, Yarrow, Sea Mayweed, Corn Marigold, Oxeye Daisy, Mugwort, Lesser Burdock, Spear Thistle, Creeping Thistle, Common Knapweed, Autumn Hawkbit, Perennial Sow-thistle, Smooth Sow-thistle, Prickly Sow-thistle, Dandelion, Baltic Rush, Toad Rush, Yellow Iris, Common Twayblade, Frog Orchid, Fragrant Orchid (very rare), Lesser Butterfly Orchid, Early Marsh Orchid (subsp. coccinea), Common Spotted Orchid (subsp. hebridensis), Pugsley’s Marsh Orchid (formely known as Hebridean Marsh Orchid), Northern Marsh Orchid, Broad-leaved Marsh Orchid, Pyramidal Orchid, Lesser Tussock-sedge, Sand Sedge, Glaucous Sedge, Red Fescue, Crested Dog's-tail

Wet heath / Moorland / Mountain:

Alpine Clubmoss, Fir Clubmoss, Wilson's Filmy-fern, Beech Fern, Lemon-scented Fern, Common Milkwort, Heath Milkwort, Alpine Meadow-rue, Wavy Bitter-cress, Wood Sorrel, Tormentil, Smooth Lady's-mantle, Alpine Lady's-mantle, Moss Campion, Rowan, Roseroot, English Stonecrop, Starry Saxifrage, Purple Saxifrage, Mossy Saxifrage (Ben Mor, S Uist), Mountain Sorrel, Alpine Saw-wort, Bog-myrtle, Downy Birch, Hazel, Aspen, Creeping Willow, Dwarf Willow, Bearberry, Cowberry, Bilberry, Heather, Cross-leaved Heath, Bell Heather, Crowberry, Thrift, Lousewort, Pale Butterwort, Common Butterwort, Wild Thyme, Wood Sage, Heath Bedstraw, Mountain Everlasting, Marsh Thistle, Cat's-ear, Hawkweed, Soft Rush, Compact Rush, Three-leaved Rush, Heath Rush, Field Wood-rush, Heath Wood-rush, Great Wood-rush, Hairy Wood-rush, Purple Moor-grass, Mat-grass, Lesser Twayblade, Lesser Butterfly Orchid, Heath Spotted Orchid, Early Marsh Orchid (subsp. incarnata), Bog Orchid, Common Cotton-grass, Hare's-tail Cotton-grass, Deer Grass, Many-stalked Wood-rush, Black Bog-rush, Star Sedge, Oval Sedge, Dioecious Sedge, Carnation Sedge, Green-ribbed Sedge, Pill Sedge, Stiff Sedge, Red Fescue, Sheep's-fescue, Viviparous Fescue, Scot's Lovage, Bog Asphodel, Bluebell (Wild Hyacinth), Round-leaved Sundew, Oblong-leaved Sundew, Greater Sundew, Honeysuckle.

Lochs / Marshes:

Bladderwort, Marsh Marigold, Lesser Spearwort, Cuckooflower, Marsh Violet, Ragged Robin, Bog Stitchwort, Blinks, Marsh Cinquefoil, Water-purslane, Hoary Willowherb, Marsh Willowherb, Mare's-tail, Common Water-starwort, Marsh Pennywort, Parsely Water-dropwort, Hemlock Water-dropwort, Fool's Water-cress, Lesser Marshwort, Wild Angelica, Amphibious Bistort, Grey Willow, Eared Willow, Bogbean, Dark-leaved Willow, Tea-leaved Willow, Bog Pimpernel, Brookweed, Creeping Forget-me-not, Tufted Forget-me-not, Blue Water-speedwell, Marsh Speedwell, Marsh lousewort, Intermediate Bladderwort, Lesser Bladderwort, Water Mint, Gipsywort, Marsh Woudwort, Skullcap, Lesser Skullcap, Water Lobelia, Common Marsh-bedstraw, Marsh Ragwort, Goldenrod, Sneezewort, Lesser Hawkbit, Lesser Water-plantain, Marsh Arrowgrass, Pondweeds, Slender Naiad, Toad Rush, Bulbous Rush, Sharp-flowered Rush, Jointed Rush, Yellow Iris, Irish Lady's Tresses, Lapland Orchid, Branched Bur-reed, Floating Bur-reed, Least Bur-reed, Bulrush, Few-flowered Spike-rush, Common Spike-rush, Slender Spike-rush, Common Club-rush, Grey Club-rush, Bristle Club-rush, Slender Club-rush, Floating Club-rush, White-beaked Sedge, Great Fen Sedge, Greater Tussock-sedge, Lesser Tussock-sedge, Brown Sedge, Few-flowered Sedge, Flea Sedge, White Sedge, Bottle Sedge, Tawny Sedge, Small-fruited Yellow-sedge, Bog Sedge, Common Sedge.

Salt Marsh / Sandy Coast:

Dunes: Sea Rocket, Common Scurvygrass, Scottish Scurvygrass, Danish Scurvygrass, English Scurvygrass, Sea Sandwort, Hoary Whitlowgrass, Heath Dog-violet, Rock Sea-spurrey, Greater Sea-spurrey, Lesser sea-spurrey, Spear-leaved Orache, Babingotn's Orache, Frosted Orache, Annual Sea-blite, Biting Stonecrop, Sea Holly, Ray's knotgrass, Curled Dock, Thrift, Sea-milkwort, Sea Bindweed (Eriskay), Sea Plantain, Buck's-horn Plantain, Sea Aster, Sea Arrowgrass, Eelgrass, Spring Squill, Saltmarsh Rush, Sea Club-rush, Saltmarsh Flat-sedge, False Fox-sedge, Curved Sedge, Sand Sedge, Distant Sedge, Long-beaked Sedge, Sea Fern-grass, Common Saltmarsh-grass, Sand Couch, Lyme-grass, Marram.

Rare plants:

Stags-horn Clubmoss, Mossy Saxifrage (Ben Mor, South Uist), Oysterplant (not seen recently), Common Cow-wheat, Pyramidal Bugle, Irish Lady's Tresses (Barra, South Uist and Benbecula), Holy Grass.